Your lateral collateral ligament (LCL) is a narrow and strong ligament on the outside of your knee. It is one of four stabilising ligaments of the knee. It attaches to the top of the shin bone (tibia) to the bottom of the thigh bone (femur). It resists forces and impact on the inside of the knee. As impact from sports and physical activities usually occur to the outside of the knee and not the inside, LCL injuries are the least common of the four knee ligaments injuries.
The four primary knee stabilising ligaments are:
When a ligament is excessively strained, it develops microtears and is damaged. Causes include:
Those with muscle weakness, ligament laxity or previous knee injuries are have an increased likelihood of sustaining an LCL injury.
The different levels of severity of injury include a ligament sprain, a partial tear, or a complete rupture. Symptoms can include:
When the injury first occurs, it’s important to stop physical activity and avoid walking on the affected knee where possible. Resting, elevating and icing the knee can help reduce the initial pain and swelling. You may be referred for an ultrasound, x-ray or MRI imaging if it is suspected that you’ve ruptured your LCL. This may require surgery.
Under the care of our knowledgeable Podiatrists, we’ll work to:
To achieve this, we may:
Every treatment plan is tailored specifically to you, your symptoms, circumstances and assessment findings. Our goal is always to deliver the best outcomes for you, so you stay active and mobile, and can keep doing the things you love.